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Are Car Accidents More Common on Tax Day?

As San Diego car accident attorneys, we were intrigued by a recent report that deaths from traffic accidents rise 6% on tax day. The study, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, suggests that death and taxes may be more closely related that once thought.

As the Los Angeles Times reports, researchers tabulated U.S. tax day traffic fatalities for each year between 1980 and 2009, and then compared the figures to those from two “control” days, exactly one week before and one week after. The analysis revealed that there were 226 deaths on tax day — 13 more than on non-tax days.

While you might expect that e-filing has lead to a decline in harried taxpayers rushing to the post office, it doesn’t appear to have put a dent in the trend, said Dr. Donald Redelmeier of the University of Toronto’s Institute of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation, who led the study.

Stress is a likely behind the spike in accidents, Redelmeier said: In general, most accidents are the result of human error, not mechanical failure, and stress has been shown to significantly impair performance behind the wheel. Distraction may also play a part as well. Therefore, additional research behind the cause of the accidents is needed, according to the researchers.

“We are not advocating an abolition of taxes,” Redelmeier said. “That does not make the problem go away.”

If you or someone you love has been seriously injured in a car accident, don’t hesitate to contact a San Diego personal injury attorney at the Law Offices of Robert Vaage for a free consultation.